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2012 Holiday Message from Connie Saindon


loved ones.

December 8, the day in 1961 that changed my family’s life forever.  My sister, Shirley Dianne Rollins, nicknamed “Tiny” lost her life that day to a fatal stabbing by someone she barely knew. 

This is when I  learned that “get over it” doesn’t apply after murder.  She is as much a part of my life and mission today, more than fifty years later as she was when she was alive.  She is an active member of my family, an important driving force.

She reminds me of what is important.  Tiny has helped me know how to embrace others doing the same important work in their own way.  She has kept my eyes open  seeing the strengths and power folks have that they never dreamed they had in living with what has happened to them. 

Amid the journey of humbling rewards, as well as: conflict, chaos, criticism and judgment, she has kept me on a path pushing aside those who have attempted to derail this important path and her continued membership in my life.     

                        Where ever I am, I am reminded or introduced to a connection to my sister’s death and this path.

 It may one of the many rocks shaped into a heart that I find.

It may be a new artist such as Tina Mion I came across unexpectedly   that shows in her own way the impact of such horrific death.

Or it may be the new friends I met  at their remembrance garden.  Take a look at their website

You will find photos of my visit to their garden in Boston and other events that are done to re-Member our loved ones at the as well as visits to the Oklahoma City National Memorial  site as well. Their website is

I wish you a happy holiday and invite you to attend our annual Holiday Memorial  remembering our loved ones and giving each other support and encouragement on December 15  from noon to two.

 If you cannot join us, please note a  holiday symbol  in memory of your loved one.  Send us a photo and we will start a photo gallery of symbols and the meaning they have for you. 

If you know me, you know my sister Tiny. She was someone who was not deterred from her path of doing the right thing… and she was always doing spontaneous kind deeds…those random acts of kindness were her forte.   I invite you to remember her  when you do the same.

Happy Holidays and let us hear from you.    Contact Connie at

Connie is founder of the Survivors of violent loss program in San Diego that started in 1998.

Survivors of Violent Loss exists to build a lifeline of hope and healing by providing support and education to those who live and work with violent death. Coping isn't easy. Survivors of Violent Loss can help. (619) 685-0005